• Ex-school officials plead to tax fraud
    July 25,2013
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    The Associated Press

    BENNINGTON — Two former employees of a Vermont school have pleaded guilty to tax fraud.

    Prosecutors say the two provided cars, gasoline and other benefits to some Bennington School employees that weren’t reported on tax returns.

    The investigation was launched in 2011.

    Matthew Merritt III, of Lenox, Mass., the school’s former plant manager, and Raymond Crowley, of Great Barrington, Mass., the former chief financial officer, pleaded guilty to tax fraud Monday in federal court in Burlington.

    Matthew Merritt Jr., of West Stockbridge, Mass., former school president and the father of Merritt III and father-in-law of Crowley, has pleaded guilty to health care fraud and filing a false tax return.

    Jeffrey LaBonte, the school’s former executive director, pleaded guilty to tax fraud.

    The four must pay $4.3 million in restitution.
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